If you have head lice, the first thing that is on your mind is how to get rid of them. However, all of the treatments in the world will not work if you do not know what the causes of head lice are. If you do not treat the causes of head lice, then you will find yourself being re-infested over and over again.
Head lice are common, and contrary to popular belief, do not have much to do with how clean you are or how often you wash your hair. Head lice are perfectly adapted for living on their human hosts, and they actually seem to prefer clean hair. A female louse can lay up to 300 eggs in her lifetime, all of which take a week to hatch and another week or so to mature into egg laying adults.
Unlike other bugs, head lice do not fly or jump. They cannot walk on the ground, and they are not attracted to animals. This makes the causes of head lice few and easy to control.
Causes of Head Lice: Close contact
One of the main causes of head lice comes from personal contact. That includes head-to-head and body-to-body contact. This is also why head lice have a tendency to infect children and family members – since these groups tend to interact closely together on a regular basis. Schools will often do periodic head checks to make sure that there are no children with lice, and if you find out that a friend or classmate has lice, you should thoroughly check your own child. That is also a good time to go over the causes of head lice with children so that they can protect themselves.
Causes of Head Lice: Stored belongings
Another of the common causes of head lice is storing items next to each other in close proximity. This is especially true of items that can commonly transmit lice or nits, including clothing, combs, pillows, and stuffed toys. They can be side-by-side hooks at school or items stored in the same closet at home.
Causes of Head Lice: Sharing
While it may be important to teach children to share, there are some things that should only be shared with caution. This is because another one of the causes of head lice comes from sharing personal items. Items like clothing, head phones, hats, brushes, towels, blankets, pillows, and other personal items can carry lice or nits and allow them to be transmitted from one person to another.
Causes of Head Lice: Furniture
One of the less common causes of head lice involves coming in contact with infested furniture. Head lice can live approximately 48 hours away from the body, and the nits can live about a week. Lying on a bed or sitting in a chair that was used by an infested person can cause you to pick up head lice as well.
By knowing the causes of head lice, you can help protect yourself and your family from them. If someone in your family does come down with head lice, eliminating the causes of the head lice will help prevent the entire family from becoming infected.